One of the most popular social networking sites today is Pinterest, an image-based site with a simple concept. Users create virtual bulletin boards for topics ranging from cooking, places to visit, to great books they’ve read. Boards are simple with a collage of photos and short descriptions. Users can follow all of another user’s boards or they can just follow certain boards.
Since it’s inception, Pinterest has had a predominantly female audience. As more brands and companies are using the site, more men are finding the simple, visual design appealing. Here are seven ways a company can use Pinterest to connect with followers.
1. Connect Pinterest With Other Social Networking Sites
Since Pinterest is the newcomer to social networking, it does not have as many users as Tumblr, Twitter or Facebook. As a company, you should point customers to Pinterest from these other accounts. Customers will like having a new way to interact with their favorite brands, and the company increases their fan base and adds new ways to engage customers. Many companies also post blog posts to Pinterest to gain new readers and customers.
2. Easier Communication Between Companies And Consumers
Social media has made it easier than ever for companies to engage with their customers. Using Pinterest, customers can post pictures of products they have purchased and let others see how they are used. The company can then share these ideas with other customers. For example, a customer posts a picture of her wearing a dress and shoes from the same company. The company highlights the outfit with a comment on how the two products look great together and thank the customer for the photo. The customer feels involved with the company, and this recognition increases brand loyalty. Other fans get new ideas about the products and feel inspired to wear the clothing.
3. Highlight Different Parts Of A Large Company
Large companies can create different boards for each segment of their company. This keeps all parts of a company separate, but under the same account. It also narrows the focus for customers who want information about just one part of a company.
4. Hold A Contest
Companies can create contests using Pinterest to engage customers and gain new customers. Contest ideas can include the most repins or creating the most visually appealing board. Users can create a board of a favorite outfit and accessories using a company’s merchandise.
5. Show A Company’s Personality
Not all businesses have products for sale, but they can still benefit from Pinterest by pinning photos that align with their personality and beliefs. Add a description of the picture so customers understand what it represents and add a link to your site or blog.
6. New Product Feedback
Companies can use Pinterest as a social media focus group to gauge the popularity of a new product. Companies can determine how well their audience likes a product from comments, likes and repins. Since Pinterest has a narrow demographic than Facebook or Twitter, it’s easier to analyze and interpret data. This type of feedback can be very valuable when launching new products or posting prototype ideas.
7. Pin Board Themes
Many companies are creating weekly or daily boards of items with a common theme. The more creative the theme of the board is, the more likely other users will follow all of the companies’ boards and repin their favorite ones. Since you post to the board throughout the day or week, users will come back for updates.
Pinterest is still in its infancy, but it holds a lot of potential. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, which are largely text based, Pinterest is very visual. This grabs the user’s attention and holds it easier than a page full of words. Pinterest makes it easy for users to repin a picture to their own board, so pictures can be seen by hundreds of people in just a short time via repins. Pinterest also allows companies to become more personal and show customers their unique personalty.
Juliana is a social media consultant who regularly collaborates with InMotion Hosting, a virtual private servers solution company, to help owners of small and medium-sized businesses.